Feature Friday: A Conversation with Diana Giovinazzo

Today for Feature Friday, I am excited to interview Diana Giovinazzo!

Diana is a long-time friend and critique partner of mine, whose debut novel The Woman in Red is will be published by Grand Central Publishing, an imprint of Hatchette Book Group. We’ve talked to one another about all stages of the writing process.

Since the theme lately has been about how we put ourselves out there as writers, I thought Diana would be the perfect person to talk about this topic with us.

Amanda: Hi Diana! Thank you for talking to me about this today! As I’ve talked to you about in the past, it’s really scary as a writer or creator of any sort to allow ourselves to be vulnerable and put both ourselves and our work out there. What advice would you give an author who is on the fence about sharing their work with others, or who is anxious about querying?

Diana: Thank you! I am honored to be here. To be a writer means that you slit your wrist and pour it on the page and to share that can be scary, but its that vulnerability that makes the art. Every writer I have ever talked to is anxious about their work being shared. It doesn’t matter if it’s their first book or their fifth book, they still worry about how others will perceive their work. That fear and doubt never go away, you can either let it dictate your dreams or, to paraphrase Carrie Fisher, you can just do it anyway and tell the fear to F*^@k off.

Amanda: How would you describe your querying experience? Was there any point where you were just like “nope, I want this to end now”?

Diana: Querying was both the hardest and most rewarding thing I have ever done. Almost every week I was sending out query letters and when you get email after email of people saying, at best, “I like your book but I don’t love it enough to represent you,” you start to get a little frustrated and that self-doubt comes in as you wonder am I good enough. I came really close multiple times of giving up but I promised myself that I would stick with it until I pitched 100 agents. I also had a great support network of friends that I could turn to. (And if you are wondering, my agent was #87)

Amanda: What things can a writer or creator do to make sharing their work less scary? Does that fear ever go away?

Diana: Lol, see question one above. I think to get used to having others get used to reading your work, the best thing to do is to to work with a critique partner or two. At least, in my opinion, the writing  relationship we developed was incredibly nurturing so that when I submitted my work out to others it made it easier for me to deal with their feedback

Amanda: What are you most excited for with the publication of your debut novel?

Diana: Honestly, I am most excited about it getting out into the world. From start to finish, it’s taken me roughly four years and I can’t wait to see the finished product sitting on a store shelf. It’s something I have dreamed of since I was a kid.

Amanda: Where do you feel most vulnerable with the publication of your debut novel?

Diana: Honestly, nowhere. I have the most amazing agent and editor at Grand Central that believe in my book just as much, if not more so than I do. It’s shaping up to be a fantastic experience.

Amanda: What is the best piece of advice you’ve ever gotten about sharing your work with others?

Diana: “Unless you are being rejected at least five times before breakfast you aren’t working hard enough.”

Amanda: Thank you so much for talking to me about vulnerability as a writer and creator. I can’t wait to see The Woman in Red on shelves.

Diana: It was my pleasure! I can’t wait, for it to come out as well. If you want to stay up to date with what’s happening with my book feel free to sign up for my newsletter.

FInd Diana on Social Media

Follow her on Twitter @DianaGauthor
Like Diana’s author page on Facebook
Check out her INSTAGRAM (there’s dog pics)!

A really long time ago, I interviewed Diana about being Critique Partners! SEE THAT HERE.

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Find me on Instagram @amandasnoseinabook

Follow me on Twitter @amandamarie5187


Feature Friday: Hundred Acre Books

Feature Friday: Hundred Acre Books

Image from @hundredacrebooks on Instagram

Today I’m talking to Sydney (aka Winnie) of Hundred Acre Books who posts beautiful bookish photos over on @hundredacrebooks on Instagram. Sydney is a great friend of mine whose posts always brighten my day. She is a beam of sunshine in the bookstagram world.

Hi Sydney! Thank you for joining me here today for Feature Friday! Why did you start a bookstagram account? Tell us the story behind Hundred Acre Books.

Feature Friday: Hundred Acre Books

Image from @hundredacrebooks on Instagram

To help me explore literature that may change my life. I remember searching tags on Instagram, and I guess book accounts popped up. I loved the community of storytellers and readers sharing books that have made a huge impact in their lives.

So I decided to start a bookclub — @Hundredacrebookclub — with 3 other bookstagrammers as my admins/hosts. That book club fell through, but I continued to post book photos. I ended up dropping the “club” and adding an “s” to transform my platform into HundredAcreBooks!

How would you describe your account?

Zany, eccentric, and colorful! I love color, especially pink!

What kind of books do you like to read? Do you have a favorite genre?

I love children’s classics. I love the innocence and the open outlook on life. My mind is very bubbly and imaginative, so I enjoy to read books that remind me how beautiful life can be♥ Continue reading

Feature Friday: The Bookish Flame

Note: Feature Friday is a new feature on Amanda’s Nose in a Book where I interview owners of small bookish businesses, bookstagrammers, and book bloggers. Stop by every Friday to get to know another person in our wonderful community.

Questions that I ask Jen appear in a heading or in bold, with her responses underneath them.

Hi Jen! Welcome to my very first Feature Friday! I’m really excited to be interviewing you.

I’m excited to be able to help you out and be your first feature!

Feature Friday- The Bookish FlameTell us a little bit about The Bookish Flame. What inspired you to start a bookish candle company?

Well, I am a book and fandom-based candle company. I started the company after being on Bookstagram for about 4 months and seeing the popularity (and my own enjoyment of) other companies’ candles. Really, I have dreams of being my own boss someday, but had never tried anything like this before and the community is just a really supportive place to start something like this. Continue reading

Don’t be Scared: Working with a Critique Partner is Awesome!

One of the best parts of being a writer is working with other writers! Diana has been one of my critique partners for nearly a year and she’s helped me get through Draft 3 of The Girl in The Glass Coffin! She’s also been helping me with Draft 4 and polishing it up!

Read a little bit about my critique partner and learn about our process of how we work together and the benefits of having a critique partner (or CP).

Meet my CP!

Name: Diana Tierney

critique partnerMy current project: It’s called Woman in Red and its an historical fiction piece on Anita Garibaldi. Writing this has been a fascinating journey. Anita is one of those underrated historical figures where the legend is threatening to over take the reality.

My favorite genre to write: Historical fiction i feel like i am a bit of an anthropologist constructing an actual character from the historical clues.

My favorite genre to read: I like books with strong female leads primarily but historical fiction is my absolute favorite to read as well.

My goal for 2015 is: To actually finish my book!

Check out Diana’s Blog!!!

Follow her on Twitter!

And on Instagram!

The idea of sharing your writing with a critique partner can be scary, but it can also be an amazing experience! Check out what Diana and I have to say about working with a CP!

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A Very Special Valentine's Day Interview with Author Laura Beege

Recently, I had the opportunity to catch up with my friend Laura Beege, author of These Things About Us. Laura and I met last summer when she contacted me to participate in her blog tour for her debut novel!  We chatted about self-publishing, books that make us swoon, and were-creatures. Check it out!


Amanda: Hi Laura! Thank you so much for agreeing to do another interview with me. I had so much fun talking to you last summer about your debut book, These Things About Us!

Laura: Hi Amanda! Thank you for having me!

Amanda:  What is the best thing that has happened to you since becoming a published author?

Laura: I realize you might want to hear about the writing life and bestseller lists, but the best part has been meeting some of the loveliest people in the world. Seriously. I got to know a bunch of bloggers and writers who are fun and nice and overall completely awesome. And between email chains “Re: Sexy Chocolate Scenes” and more support than anyone could wish for, they overwhelm me every day with their love and friendship.

Amanda:  Where do you get ideas for your novels?

Laura: That’s a tough one. Everywhere, really. I just had another one today when watching an old Eisenstein movie in class. The other day I saw a picture on pinterest that immediately sparked the idea for an entire series. And sometimes I just lie on the floor and listen to music when it hits me. To me, the problem isn’t getting ideas but finding a way to filter the good ones from the bad ones.

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Interview with Katie Hamstead, author of Kiya Hope of the Pharaoh


Amanda: In three words how would you describe yourself?
Katie: Wife, mother, Aussie.

Amanda: What made you want to be a writer?
Katie: I don’t think there was one specific thing that made me decide. My parents always nurtured my creativity, so I’ve been writing stories since I was twelve. The writing has been on and off over the years, but when I found myself with downtime after I married and fell pregnant, I picked it up again.Then, after positive feedback, I decided to look into querying. What could it hurt right?

Amanda:  What is your writing process like?
Katie: I am a pantser, so I come up with an idea, work out the beginning and the end, and allow my characters to take me the rest of the way. For Kiya I needed to implement research and establishing a timeline of events, and I molded the story around that.

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Interview with Bev Stout, Author of Secrets of the Realm

Bev contacted me a couple of weeks ago asking me if I was interesting in reading her Young Adult historical fiction debut, Secrets of the Realm. I jumped at the chance to read a novel about a 15 year old girl who has to pose as a boy and ends up as a cabin boy on a merchant’s ship. Bev was awesome to work with and I was very excited to get the chance to interview her and get her take on Secrets of the Realm.

Amanda: Tell us a little bit about yourself? Who is Bev Stout?
Bev: I am a wife, mother and grandmother.  While I have worked at IBM and also in a dental office, my favorite jobs always involved 61791_401394223313936_1715457053_nworking with children.  I taught piano for thirty-five years, have been a Girl Scout Leader, a Den Mother, and I now volunteer at a children’s outreach program.  I love feeding the ducks on the lake, taking our dog, Milly, for walks and spoiling our crazy cat, Jasmine.  I enjoy vacationing in Cambria on the California coast and anything that has to do with nature and family.  Almost forgot, I play tennis at least twice a week even if the temperature is in the triple digits.

Amanda: How would you describe Annie, the main character in Secrets of the Realm to someone who has not read the book yet?
Bev: She is a fifteen year-old English girl who is spirited, highly intelligent, and often talks and acts on impulse, which gets her into trouble.  Annie knows what she wants, and nothing will stop her—not her small stature and not society’s norms. She is a survivor who sets out to overcome the cruel hand fate has dealt her.

Amanda:  Where did you get the inspiration to write this novel?
Bev: My motivation for writing Secrets of the Realm was to hand down something to my family . My inspiration was simply Annie. Her story was always a part of me.  I knew her birthplace. I knew her love for family. But when I actually sat down to write her story, I realized there was so much more to her.  The people from her past and her present were all a big part of who Annie is.

Continue reading

Blog Tour- Interview with Laura Beege about her novel These Things About Us


Laura contacted me when I first began this blog asking if I would be interested in participating in the blog tour for her soon to be published novel Those Things About Us. Of course I said I would! I love helping self-published authors and talking to authors about their work.

I had the opportunity to do a video interview with Laura so that we could chat about These Things About Us. Check out what she had to say below!

Read my review of These Things About Us!

Find Laura Beege Online!TheseThingsAboutUs-LauraBeegePhoto

Her Website



Find These Things About Us Online!